What’s the best Roomba for pet hair?

When pet hair attacks! Which is the best Roomba for pet hair?

which is the best roomba for pet hair?

Pet hair can be one of the hardest things to get out of your carpet, especially for a smaller vacuum like the iRobot Roomba. Choosing the best roomba for pet hair can be a daunting task but it’s worth it. Our pets are some of the most beloved members of our family but sometimes it can be a huge chore to clean up after a shedding dog or cat. Having pet dander around your house can be a huge trigger for your allergies. If only there was a way to clean up after your pet hair with minimal fuss.

I’m here to help you choose the best Roomba for your pet. Take my advice here, and your floors will be cleaner and your air will be cleaner, all without a ton of extra work. What can be better than a happy pet in a happy home?

I’m comparing all of the “Official best Roomba for Pet Hair” models, plus the Roomba 980. The Roomba 980 is the “top of the line” and it handles pet hair extremely well. Read through all of the mini-reviews, or just scroll down to the end to see which Roomba that I think is the best Roomba for pet hair.


Some models of Roomba are better for pet hair than others and in order to show you how the very best Roomba handles pet hair, Here’s on of my favorite youtube videos from iRobot showing just how much dog hair a Roomba 980 can pick up. The Roomba 980 is one of the pricier options but you can see in the video that it does a GREAT job of handling pet hair

UPDATE: In the past, I’ve compared the Roomba 650, 770, and 870 models for their performance on dog hair and cat hair but those Roomba models are a little outdated. My comparison below takes into account newer models

Roomba 690

This is iRobot’s newest “cheap” Roomba model. Just because it’s cheap doesn’t mean that it’s not a powerhouse and won’t do a good job cleaning your floors.

Buyers of the Roomba 690 report that even with many cats or a few dogs, the Roomba 690 does a really great job on hardwood and tile floors. You’ll see an immediate difference on hardwood and tile. On carpet, just like the older Roomba 650, the reviews are mixed. Some people say that it’s “OK” While others say “Good” to “Very good”.

Overall, the Roomba 690 will clean up your dog and cat hair like a beast. One thing I love about this Roomba model is that it has an app that you can use to control the Roomba. This is a new thing for the cheaper Roomba, as the app used to be reserved for only the expensive Roomba models.

What I don’t like about the Roomba 690 is that it has bristle brushes instead of the newer tangle-free brushes that some of the pricier models have on them. If you have a hairy pet, you’re going to be spending a lot of time cleaning the brushes.

My advice on the Roomba 690: It will work for cleaning up cat and dog hair, but you’ll get annoyed with how often you have to clean the brushes. If you’re on a very tight budget this would be a good choice

Cheapest Price Here


Roomba 890

The Roomba 890 is the newest Roomba model at the time of this post and I think it’s awesome for pet hair. It’s not as cheap as the 690 model, but for about $100 extra you get the tangle-free brushes and Amazon Alexa integration. This is great for echo owners since this Roomba model will integrate with your echo.

I mentioned tangle-free brushes vs bristle brushes earlier – They cost a little more but they’re totally worth it when you have pets. The pet hair gets tangled up in the bristle brushes (on the 690 model). On the 890 model you’re not going to spend any time at all pulling pet hair out of the main brush, which is totally worth it to me.

The Roomba 890 has 5x the suction of the 690 so it’ll pull a lot more hair out of a carpet. It also has a high efficiency filter which will filter out 99% of all allergens and pet dander. If you love your pet but hate your allergies, you’re going to love the filter on the 890.

If you’re thinking about buying a Roomba 690 because it’s cheaper, I would get the 890 instead if you have allergies because it has a much better filter.

More 890 reviews Here 


Roomba 960

The Roomba 960 is a lot like the Roomba 890. It has all of the same features with the addition of smart camera mapping, and recharge+resume. All of these model numbers are confusing, I know. If you want your head to stop spinning, scroll down to the bottom of the page. There, I recommend which Roomba model to buy based on budget if you’re a pet owner. The difference here between the previous model is that the Roomba 960 has an onboard camera that maps out your living space to clean it more efficiently. That means that it will use less power, and run for shorter periods of time.

The Roomba 960 also has recharge and resume, which means that it’ll return to it’s charging station when it’s low on battery fluid (as my dad used to call it). This works great for larger rooms since it can just pick up cleaning where it left off.

In terms of cleaning up pet hair, the Roomba 960 is about the same as the 890 so if you don’t care about efficiency then buy the cheaper 890.

Best price on the 960


Roomba 980

The Roomba 980 is really the Mother of all robotic vacuums. It is, in my opinion the very best Roomba (and robotic vacuum) on the market right now. There are so many features on the 980 that I’m going to have to write another blog post. I will summarize them here… The 980 is REALLY good on pet hair, and the new “carpet boost” feature makes it even better. It has every feature that the other models on this page have. It also has the ability to control via the smart phone app and carpet boost technology. Carpet boost makes this Roomba the best for pet hair.

It’s expensive, which is the only drawback to buying this model. If you have a pet hair problem and your budget allows it, buy this Roomba right away! It’s an awesome robot and you’ll be glad that you did. Click my Amazon button below to get the best deal possible on this Roomba. Getting the best deal certainly helps with the budget issue.

Best price on Roomba 980

 Frequently Asked Questions

Some of my readers have the following questions about their furry friends and how a Roomba will help them:

Q: What is the best Roomba for pet hair in 2018?

A: My chart below will give you the best Roomba for pet hair in 2018. It’s based on your budget and features that you want.

Q: How’s the performance for a Roomba and dog hair?

A: It really depends on how much your dog sheds it’s fur. Some dog breeds, like Labrador Retrievers, have a double coat of fur and will shed a lot. The more your dog sheds the harder the Roomba has to work. That’s where having the Roomba 980 has it’s advantages since it has superior section and is way more efficient.

Q: How’s the performance for a Roomba and cat hair?

Like dogs, cat breeds differ in the length of hair and the amount of hair shed. If you find pet hair in your house every day after vacuuming up your cat’s hair, you’re going to want a Roomba that is more efficient. If your cat sheds a little, a budget model will be fine, Ff your cat sheds a lot, you’ll want a mid-range or high end model.

Q: Why don’t you have any of those cute videos of pets riding the Roomba?

I LOVE watching those! They’re not informational though and I try to stick to informational topics. Maybe I’ll post some on the Robotic Vacs Facebook page.

In conclusion

What *is* the best Roomba for pet hair? I’ve done the research on all of them and I believe that if you have the means, you should buy the Roomba 980. The carpet boost feature really makes it the best roomba for pet hair that you can buy.

Here’s my recap of the best Roomba for dog and cat owners:

Best Roomba for Pet Hair

Model NumberPrice RangeFeatures
Roomba 980HighHigh priced, but best
Roomba 960Mid RangeTangle Free Brushes. Great Performer.
Roomba 890BudgetBest budget choice for allergy sufferers
Roomba 690BudgetWorks well but with a couple of hassles.

Want a great deal? Scroll up and click the buttons to be taken right to Amazon, where you’ll find the lowest prices on Roomba!

9 thoughts on “What’s the best Roomba for pet hair?”

    • Hi Laurie,

      On the Roomba models with bristle brushes, we suggest taking out the brush to clean off of the hair once every 2 weeks. If you have pets with longer hair, once a week is better, and as long as it’s done regularly you shouldn’t have to cut the hair off of the brush.

      Even better is to get a Roomba that has the rubber brushes without the bristles. These do a pretty good job of getting the hair our of your carpets and you won’t have to spend time pulling hair out of the brush like you do with the bristle brushes. I recommend the Roomba 860 or 960. They both do a great job of cleaning and have tangle-free rubber brushes that are nicer if you have to deal with lots of hair.

    • Hi Kenda,

      Since you have wood floors, there is not much point to spending a LOT of money on one of the more expensive models of Roomba. They’re geared more toward carpet than they are hardwood floors. The Roomba 650 would serve you well.

      Another option which I recommend lately is the iLife A6 or the iLife v5s (which has a mopping function perfect for non-carpeted floors). Check out my round up of iLife models here

  1. I have hardwood floors and area rugs, with lots of pet hair? Which roomba would be best for me? Will the roomba be able to transition well between surfaces? Thank you

    • Hi Lindsay?

      What type of rugs do you have? Berber carpet? Shag carpet? I can tell you from experience that Roomba does NOT transition well from a hardwood floor to thick carpets. Transitions are smooth on shorter carpet.

      I personally recommend the Roomba 860, 890, or 980. They have the rubber brushes which are nice for pet hair. The older bristle brushes are a pain to clean when you have a lot of hair on your floor.

    • Hi Gina,

      We haven’t reviewed the Roomba 690 yet, but will, so stay tuned! Looking at the specs, I can see that it has a different brush type than the 900 series (960, 980) Roomba models. It looks like you will be cleaning pet hair out of them often, while with the 900 series, you wouldn’t have to since they’re tangle-free.

      As a pet Owner I love my Roomba 960 and 980 simply due to the fact that I don’t have to pull hair out of those brushes, while with some of my older Roomba models, I have to de-tangle every other day.

  2. What about the wheels on the vacuums? Are they also hair clog resistant? Every piece of equipment I have with wheels/castors gets my long haired cats hair caught in the wheels. It is even more annoying than the brushes.


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